News and Media
Wilkes-Barre in the News
WILKES-BARRE HOUSING MARKET NAMED ONE OF US'S MOST AFFORDABLE
The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton metropolitan area was named one of the most affordable housing markets in the
United States by BusinessWeek.com. Our area rounded out the website's "Most Affordable" list at number 10.
According to their website, BusinessWeek.com determined the 10 most affordable and 10 least affordable major
metros by using the new National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo (WFC) Housing Opportunity Index
(HOI) for the second quarter based on incomes and home prices.
Click here to view the slideshow that showcases the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton metropolitan area in the top 10
Mayor Leighton is very pleased that our region was featured in this list, saying, "The Wilkes-Barre area offers a wide variety of affordable housing options for families, ranging from modern and historic single-family homes in established neighborhoods to condos and apartments near the downtown. This variety, combined with our outstanding quality of life, makes Wilkes-Barre is a great, affordable place to live and raise a family."
WILKES-BARRE PROJECTS RECEIVE $5.5 MILLION IN FUNDING FROM GOVERNOR RENDELL
On Thursday, August 7, two projects in the City of Wilkes-Barre received $5.5 million in funding from Governor
Edward G. Rendell as a part of his statewide bus tour - $1.5 million for the Murray Complex, located on Ross Street
and Pennsylvania Boulevard in Wilkes-Barre, and $4 million for the Stegmaier Building, located on Wilkes-Barre Boulevard.
Mayor Thomas M. Leighton and developers for both projects were on hand for the announcement.
"The City of Wilkes-Barre is very grateful for the support of Governor Rendell and the Commonwealth. The renovation of both the Murray Complex and the former Stegmaier building will bring quality housing to downtown Wilkes-Barre, a necessary piece in our overall revitalization," said Leighton.
Pictured L-R: Tom Romanowski of Greenspace Properties LLC; State Representative Todd Eachus, 116th Legislative District; State Representative Karen Boback; 117th Legislative District; Governor Edward G. Rendell; Daniel Siniawa, Daniel Siniawa & Associaites; Mayor Thomas M. Leighton, City of Wilkes-Barre
Former Murray Complex Daniel Siniawa & Associates, of Dickson City, will renovate the former Murray Complex on Ross Street and Pennsylvania Boulevard into 55 residential condo units and approximately 49,000-square-feet of commercial/retail and restaurant space. Pictured below right: Mayor Thomas M. Leighton, City of Wilkes-Barre; Daniel Siniawa, Daniel Siniawa & Associates; and Robert Sakosky, Daniel Siniawa & Associates accept $1.5 million check from the Commonwealth for the Murray Complex Project.
Former Stegmaier Building
Greenspace Properties LLC will convert the former Stegmaier building on Wilkes-Barre Boulevard into a mixed-use building, including space for a restaurant, retail, 47 apartments, an art gallery and parking. Pictured below: Mayor Thomas M. Leighton, City of Wilkes-Barre; Tom Romanowski, Greenspace Properties LLC; and Scott Byers, Diversified Information Technologies accept $4 million in funding for the Stegmaier Building renovation.
Congratulations! to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins on an outstanding season! Please click here to view photos from the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Pep Rally on Public Square.
WILKES-BARRE RECOGNIZED BY GOVERNOR RENDELL FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENT EXCELLENCE
Recently, the City of Wilkes-Barre was among 17 individual officials and local government entities that were honored by Governor Edward G. Rendell for their leadership, accomplishments and dedication to providing a better quality of life for the residents of Pennsylvania communities. Mayor Thomas M. Leighton and members of the administration accepted the "Responding to Adversity" award for the city's efforts to prevent devastation caused by flooding in the South Wilkes-Barre section of the city. The City of Wilkes-Barre has invested over $5 million to completely reconstruct the South Franklin and Waller Street Bridges, two of the four bridges that span Solomons Creek. Work has begun on the Regent Street Bridge and construction will commence on the Barney Street Bridge later this year.
WBPD SWEARS-IN 4 NEW OFFICERS
On Friday, March 7, Mayor Leighton and Police Chief Dessoye officially swore-in the Wilkes-Barre Police Department's four newest members. Since taking office in 2004, Leighton has added 25 new officers to the force. Today's hires will fill positions left by retired officers, beginning with training at the Municipal Police Training School at Lackawanna College for ACT 120 certification on March 10. After completing this training, all of the new hires will serve as patrol officers. Seated: Mayor Thomas M. Leighton, James Conmy, Dana Cope, Paul Crawford, Bernard Magagna, Police Civil Service Commission Member Phil Latinski; Standing: Police Civil Service Commission Chairman Frank Majikes, Wilkes-Barre Police Department Chief Gerard Dessoye, Wilkes-Barre Police Department Chaplin Rev. Duane Gavitt, Captain Lori Riemensnyder, Captain Wayne Cooney, Captain Donald Crane, Police Civil Service Commission Member Joe Moran
MAYOR LEIGHTON TESTIFIES AT CAPITAL MARKETS SUBCOMMITTEE HEARING
On Thursday, February 14, Mayor Leighton, along with a panel of senior state and federal regulators, testified about the state of the bond insurance industry. He discussed how the disorder in the industry could constrain the ability of municipalities to generate enough funding to provide services and undertake projects like building roads, renovating schools, and repairing bridges. "Despite making great strides financially, the City of Wilkes-Barre still struggles to obtain bond insurance, especially at competitive rates. As a result, turmoil in the municipal bond market is a significant concern for us," said Mayor Thomas M. Leighton. "I commend Congressman Kanjorski for taking the initiative on this very important issue so that mid-sized cities across the country can continue to advance." To read Mayor Leighton's testimony, please click the photo above.